Badlands & Black Hills The Interview


Welcome everybody to the latest edition of Bop the Blog, in which I interview Kylie about our day boppin’ round the Badlands & Black Hills, as well as touch on Kylie’s very unique interest in Mt. Rushmore.

Aside: After reading our first couple posts, my grandmother’s main takeaway was, “Oofta, your stories sure seem to involve a lot of drinking.”

So I decided to write this post drunk.

Chris: You need to wake up.

(sitting across the hotel room office table, her chair turned sideways, Kylie jolts her head up in response)

Kylie:  I-am-a-wake-up!

C: Okay, lets take this shot of Jack. 

K: Yes, to Ginny!

C: To grandma. 

(our lowballs click together, we drink, she gags)

K:  Sorry, I couldn’t. I had to use Earl Grey as a chaser.

(half her drink remains un-drunk)

Do I have to take this whole thing before we start?

C: No, we can start.

K: These pillows, Chris! Oh my gosh! They tell you if they’re firm or not!

(Helena Beat by Foster the People plays in the background. Kylie has been itching to play this song all day, since the hotel we’re staying at is in Helena, MT) 

C: Let’s get started. Here are some pictures of your boots. What made you wanna take pictures of your boots?


K: Have you ever seen a newborn baby seal, do you want to?

(sticks iPhone in my face)


I didn’t but want to see, but I’m glad I did

C: Ky.

K: Okay, my boots. That picture represents me being close to the edge, and my boots represent me being outdoorsy. I don’t want people to think I’m standing around taking standing pictures, so I sat down. This is intense, I feel like there’s a camera on me.

(Kylie reaches for the wine bottle resting between us on the table and helps herself to a swig)

Can I re-answer?

C: No. But I’m going to call you Boots from now on.

Boots: Okay. Let me finish this whiskey before you ask any more questions.

(Boots downs the rest of her drink, inspecting the lowball afterward)

Can we keep these?

C: No, we just leave them in the room. Here is a photo of me on top of some Badlands rocks, can you please explain just exactly how insanely high up I was/the athletic prowess it took for me to get up there?


B: Athletic what?

C: Prowess, like skill.

B: What’s the word I’m thinking of… p-p-p-parkour?  Well, let me see the picture again. Yeah, I would say it was parkour. Can you repeat the question?

C: Next question. The Badlands is obviously an incredible place. Based on your own experiences, feelings, and memories, how would you describe the park? 

B: (groans)


       (puts finger up to indicate that she needs a second)

Well, I’m glad you asked.


Well, I loved the rock formations, and I especially love the prairie dogs. And I just can’t believe there’s a place where you can just hang out with a bunch of prairie dogs and bison. That’s pretty neat. Do I sound like an idiot, yet?


C:  No. I agree about the neatness. Top 5 things about the Badlands. Ready. Go.

B: (holds up index finger) Prairie Dogs! After that, the Bison in our campground. The views. The hikes.





C: Okay, one more thing.

B: That little town.

C: What little town?

B: The prairie dog towns. But also that other town, Interior, SD, I think. One of the park’s gateway towns. I just wonder what they all do, where their kids go to school. And just why they live there. Do they work there? If not, do they get free access to the park? It was interesting.


C:  After the Badlands, we took off for Mt. Rushmore.



B: Mhm.

C. It’s well known you have a thing for dads. What was it like seeing the Founding Fathers?

B: Well Chris, I’ve never seen any dads that big before. I mean, Teddy Roosevelt’s mustache was humongous. Probably the biggest in the world. So that’s something to really think about. Besides that, it was great to finally see where Richie Rich and lasers came together.



C. Also, some guy video taped your bosom there. Can you talk a little about that?

B: Yeah, I can. I asked… no, you asked some guy to take our picture in front of the monument. He didn’t even get a good picture of us, but he got this zoomed in video of my boobs. He knew what he was doing. He had an iPhone in his back pocket. He was a savage.



C: I was really excited for Deadwood because I watched the HBO show about it. It was a pretty whack overall, though. Have you forgiven me for making that a priority yet? 





B: Yes, we got to have burgers with waffle fries and seasoned sour cream. It was a good end to the day. And it was a neat town. Shoe stores had slot machines in them. I’m not mad. You can’t just have everyone think I’m always mad, cause I’m not.

C: Are you mad right now? 

B: (death stare) No.

C: We ended up racing to find a campground to beat the dark and the storm. How scared were you/how brave was I in regard to the lightning and the nearby predatory animals which I fended off?

B: What animals did you fend off? I never saw any animals. At all. All day.

C: The ones who saw me but decided it wasn’t worth the trouble. Probably because of my tomahawk hatchet or my muscles.

B: The tomahawk was in a storage tote the entire day. You cut yourself opening it out of the plastic. There were no animals. It was just you and I and the tent. Are you okay?

C: I’m fine. But I totally protected you from the storm, right?

B: I mean, the tent stayed up, which was good. Cause it was a bit shaky for a minute there. But the storm wasn’t gonna hurt me. Do you just want me to say you protected me, you saved the day? Because I can say that.

(I take a swig of wine)

C: No, Boots. I think you’ve said enough.




Hanna Campground, Black Hills National Forest (free)





















Breakfast with bison








Caught in a pose

Caught in a pose



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